About
the Model

The Specialisterne model:

Provides an accelerated skills training platform that leads to industry-recognized credentials to enter the IT workforce.

Areas of specialization:

  • Software Management
  • Testing and Registration
  • Data Logistics
 
The Assessment
Structure

LEGO Mindstorms are used to evaluate a person’s open-ended problem solving skills, creative thinking, data interpretation ability, and software testing skills.

 
The Fee
Structure

The Arc@Work fee structure is customizable based on the specific needs of our corporate clients. The Arc @Work and its local partners through our staffing solutions can provide skill assessments for potential job candidates, on-boarding support, and follow-up, long-term support services. The Arc@Work can also provide consultation for corporate clients on disability awareness, organizational policies and procedures, and on federal evaluation and reporting compliance.

Note: The Arc@Work can support corporate clients to access public funding streams to reduce their costs associated with training, on-boarding and retention support.

 
Current
Program
Locations

The Specialisterne program is currently operational in four locations:

SpArc Philadelphia
Philadelphia, PA
AHRC New York City
New York, NY
The Arc of DC
Washington, DC
The Arc of the Midlands
Lexington, SC

Chapters of The Arc have contracts at these locations with a number of national and multinational corporations, including SAP, CAI and Towers Watson.

Does your business struggle to find talented employees with the skills and experience necessary to excel in the information technology (IT) field?

If your answer is yes, you are not alone. Too many IT corporations that cannot find qualified employees are unaware that individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) have the skills needed for jobs in the IT field, but are often unable to find employment because of their disability.

Through our social enterprise The Arc@Work, we are dedicated to improving the availability of competitive employment for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). The Arc@Work includes an array of employment related products and services to employers and local organizations supporting individuals with I/DD. As a part of this portfolio, we have partnered with the Danish nonprofit Specialisterne to provide youth with ASD that are interested in IT with job training and placement at national corporations.

Read more about the Specialisterne Program

Through the Specialisterne program, we recruit qualified candidates who have a high school diploma or college degree but have been unable to find employment because of their disability. We offer participants a four-week training course that includes:

  • Skills evaluation and assessment
  • Assistance in improving soft-job skills, such as managing the job interview and interacting with supervisors and coworkers
  • On-the-job training as computer programmers, software developers, systems administrators and analysts, and database administrators at corporations specifically interested in hiring youth with ASD.

In order to create a productive and supportive environment for both employers and new employees, the Specialisterne program also provides our partners with assistance in:

  • Employee awareness and education
  • Management training
  • Recruiting processes
  • Workplace accommodation

The unique characteristics of ASD mean that many individuals on the spectrum have skills that make them ideal for positions in IT, such as excellent pattern recognition, the ability to spot deviance in data, and outstanding attention to detail. By harnessing the talents of this underrepresented group of skilled individuals, the Specialisterne program allows businesses to benefit from one of the largest untapped talent pools in the IT field.

 
The Training
Structure

The Specialisterne training develops participants’ soft job skills and provides job-specific training (called Scrum training) that prepares them for positions at major companies in the IT and STEM related sectors.

SCRUM – is an iterative and incremental agile software development framework for managing software projects, products or application development.

Participants undergo a four-week assessment and training course that includes:

  • Skills evaluation and assessment
  • Assistance in improving soft-job skills, such as managing the job interview and interacting with supervisors and coworkers
  • On-the-job training and placement as computer programmers, software developers, systems administrators and analysts, and database administrators at corporations specifically interested in hiring youth with ASD

Read about the four-week training course

The Four-Week Training Course
  • (Week 1) Individual Comfort Zone
    Skills training on open-ended problem solving activities using science and mathematics concepts with soft skill development such as creative thinking, teamwork, and communication skills.
  • (Week 2) Team Comfort Zone
    Skills training on robotic solutions relations to computer software development through SCRUM framework. On the job experiences and interaction with current employees.
  • (Week 3) Passion for Details
    Simulated training activities on software testing and data handling.
  • (Week 4) Work Zone
    Social skills building such as conflict management, team work processes, and communication with supervisors.